Friday, October 15, 2010


Dottie has been J's dog since she was only a few weeks old. By the time I met J and shortly thereafter, Dottie, she was just over a year old. She was still a spunky young girl, and actually acted like a puppy until she was at least 8 years old. Dottie was a high energy dog, who loved to run and jump. She would run so hard her ears would flap in the wind. Her hair was often wild, she was never the fancy pretty girl type, always a tough tomboy. Even in her old age, she still had her wild hair:

She used to run loose all over our land. I would be taking a walk in the woods and suddenly Dottie would run up behind me. She was always nearby, though we didn't always see her. Dottie loved the snow. Her favorite thing on a winter day was to lay by the fireplace, then run outside and roll in the snow. She would dive down in the snow, getting her ears deep into a snow drift.

Dottie has been a part of our family since before Emma was born. She had been good with kids, and took to Emma immediately. Emma was only 6 months old when Dottie was hit by a car. The injuries were significant and we were told at that time that these injuries would become a problem as she aged. In the mean time, we had ten wonderfully healthy years in there. One of Dottie's injuries was a shattered leg. To fix it, she had a steal rod pinned on the outside of her leg. It was quite gruesome. One day without thinking too much of it, I put Emma on the floor to play, while I went to wash some dishes. Later I looked back at her to find that Emma had scooted over to Dottie and was holding the steal rod in her hand! Dottie never growled, never cried, never made any noise, but the look on her face with her eyes bugging out was clear that she wanted me to remove this child from her grasp immediately. I have to say, if I had been in Dottie's position, I might have growled. Dottie had more patience and kindness than that. She knew Emma was just a baby and didn't mean any harm.

We were worried after her accident if she would be able to jump in the air and twirl around like she always had. It was amazing that with one leg having been shattered and the other hip out of socket (they never were able to get it back in correctly), Dottie managed to regain her jump twist maneuver. She also was able to run in the woods again, bouncing over logs and other obstacles, reminding me of Tigger. All you could see was a white fleck bouncing through the woods.

In the early years of our marriage, I used to tease J that I married him for Dottie. They say people marry for all sorts of reasons, and that seemed as good a reason as any. In fact, a good dog is better than many other reasons I've heard of. Though now, after 12 years together, he doesn't need to worry that without Dottie we'll fall apart.

Dottie has always been there for me. J has worked the night shift since 2003, and there have been several instances when there was a bump in the night that I, as the only parent home, had to go investigate. Dottie would always go with me, no matter what time, no matter where we had to go. She'd jump up and walk with me, going into the darkness ready to protect me. When I starting running several years ago, Dottie was the only dog who could last an entire run with me. All of our other dogs will run great the first few laps, but will tucker out too soon. Dottie's walk pace was my run pace, so she would set the pace for me. Whenever I was sad, even before I realized it myself, I would notice Dottie would follow me all over, never leaving my side. She was a loyal faithful dog.

Here is Dottie, in her old age, sitting in her favorite spot by the front window, with the kids:

I've often said that Dottie is the best dog ever. I know we've had other good dogs (and will again in the future), but I've said all along that no dog will be as good as Dottie. You can't beat her. No matter how much we like a dog, no matter how great we think he/she is, they are still no Dottie.

Dottie will forever be in our hearts, we will never forget her.


Linda said...

What a treasure you had in her.

AllyB said...

A wonderful tribute. I'm sorry for you loss and want to thank you for you thoughtfulness on my behalf. xxxooo

Cathy said...

A good dog is one of life's greatest pleasures. They are treasured famly members and their loss is hits us so hard. My condolences.

Ertman-Trowbridge Family said...

I am truly sorry for your loss. A good dog is a treasure and you were blessed with a goldmine.

Pin It button on image hover